DEFINITION of 'Netscaped'

A slang term referring to an instance in which a company gets hurt materially or put out of business as a result of head-to-head competition with Microsoft. Microsoft's size, resources and expertise mean there is always a risk that the company will steal market share. Many competitors have tried to beat the software giant and ended up suffering serious damage.


This term is derived from what happened in the 1990s in the market for internet browsers. Originally, Netscape was the leader, and its cutting-edge browser controlled a large portion of the market. However, Microsoft put huge resources into developing its own browser, Internet Explorer, which gobbled up market share from Netscape. This dashed Netscape's hopes for any long-term success. Some critics questioned the legality of Microsoft's competition strategy, which essentially consisted of giving Internet Explorer away for free by bundling it with the Windows operating system. In the end, it didn't matter - a decimated Netscape was bought out by America Online in 1998.